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The 6Ps: Principles for Serving Leadership

This piece is the fifth post in a series on the “The 6Ps for Profound and Positive Living". You can find all writings on the subject by searching 6Ps in the search bar.


Our world desperately needs leaders of character who embody clear principles of integrity, selflessness, and courage and who are willing and able to put the needs of those they lead and serve above their own in order to help their organizations serve a bigger purpose.

Such leadership requires great dedication and discipline to live from a place of virtue. I know for me, this is a great challenge. Above all else, I want to serve me and despite what I may espouse, I know I can be very selfish and self-serving.

I have learned that each of us have two wolves within us:

The fearful and selfish wolf VS. the compassionate and generous wolf.

Whatever wolf you feed and cultivate flourishes and thrives.

I have come to find for me that the selfish and self-serving wolf is the easier path and without much effort, that wolf will find a comfortable home. So, for my “better” nature to come forth, I have to be even more determined and disciplined to make sure the compassionate and generous wolf is being nurtured and welcomed.

In a previous post I  shared a number of virtues and qualities that I hope my family and friends will think of me when I have left this planet. Most of these qualities overlap with some of the principles I center myself on in my coaching and teaching. These principles embody this compassionate and generous wolf within and they are the key virtues that I want to be mindful of each day to stay aligned and focused in service to my purpose.

When going through my daily ritual, after getting clear in my purpose, I ask myself, “How can I stay centered on a few powerful and poignant principles?” I find this practice helps me to be more intentional throughout my day and it leads to a higher probability that my day will be a good one. Often when coaching, I will use the acronym CHICK to remember to embody these five principles:

Compassion and Empathy: Everyone’s life has struggle and heartache; how can I fully appreciate what others are experiencing and provide a place of refuge and support for them in the midst of whatever challenges and difficulties they may be going through?

Humility: In my time with others, what matters most is serving and supporting them; what do they need? What do they aspire to? What are their obstacles and barriers? What are their talents and strengths?

Integrity: This is about seeing our work lives as integrated with all the other elements of our lives and integration of what we live, with what we espouse. How can I help others gain greater insight into their own integrity and how they might see opportunities to strengthen that?

Courage: Sometimes the best I can do for someone is to facilitate dialogue that may be uncomfortable and that requires me to be courageous in creating some tension and discord.

Kindness: Every human being regardless of ethnicity, geographic origins, and social economic conditions will encounter sorrow, pain, and disappointment at one point in their lives. One of the ways I can serve others is to extend to them as much kindness as possible. One never knows the positive and uplifting impact another’s kindness may have on them.

By staying true to a set of principles that elevate our behavior, we can stay more connected to a purpose bigger than our own self-interests and, as a result, be more inspiring, compassionate and authentic leaders.


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